Thursday, August 14, 2014

E@H Blog Hop: Wardrobe-Extra Ratchet Style

First off, thanks to everyone for Yankee well wishes! He's back to his old rambunctious self!

Extra rad Dino for Blog Hop
A little slow on the uptake but I was reading everyone's posts and was like I WANNA JOIN LEMME

So I did. Because I felt really left out on the last one, discussing all the extra neat topics with all the cool kids.

As any of you may be aware of by now, the blog hop question (BHQ for further reference) was:

I want to know about what you ride in and why? Show us your Equestrian Fashion choices and tell us why you wear them!

Well, my dear readers. There is a reason my twitter handle is Ratchet Eventing.

Completely, one hundred percent ghetto from day one.

I know I look well put together and really fashionable

But I have never been blessed with a swagtastic riding wardrobe (I have the short rubber "show" boots as a child. Extra classy) and most of my clothes come from discount stores like, Wal-mart and Plato's closet, or are hand-me-downs. The very few "nice" items I own were most likely snagged off eBay or were also hand-me-downs.

For example, my XC vest WAS a Tipperary- as a christmas present. My show boots WERE a super expensive (like $400) amazing birthday present. I use past tense because neither are here with us today. My vest was trusty, and lasted 10 years before it was...."lost". My boots were eaten by rats after 8 years of dutiful service... THOSEFUCKERS. Its okay though, they were held together by duct tape and on occasion, black vet wrap. My name brand breeches were bought with gift cards from christmas, years ago. They are still hanging on somehow, but with numerous holes in varies places. Do you see a trend? I keep everything. Until they die.

Without further ado though, I present,
Monica's Guide to Style: Pretending to Be Classy On Little-To-Zero Budget

From the top down;

My Charles Own Pro II I got off eBay in 2011 for a SERIOUS discount. You will note the very stylish headband keeping my helmet cover in place, because apparently part of the discount included hardly any grippy action on the skull cap. I've also fallen off 4 times with this helmet and probably need to replace at some point. I also sweat like a faucet and I'm pretty sure it reeks. BUT, my favorite helmet ever purchased BY FAR on accounts of comfort, function, and looks. #eventerfashion

Apologies for the seriously blurry pic of some of my super expensive riding shirts. 5 whole dollars at Wal-mart! But whatever, they are comfortable, light in the summer and fun colors! Downside, they get ruined quickly with my mega sweaty body. I'm gross.
I also ride in tanks acquired from Plato's Closet, ranging from $3-$5. Really good at preventing that farmers tan look by tanning shoulders and chest adequately.
I also consistently ride in baggy T shirts, cutoffs, or no shirt at all. I have not updated upper body wear in probably minimum 3 years and most t shirts are probably from middle school.

My gloves are one of the only "name brand" things I own, and even then the ones on the left I believe were $10 on eBay? The Heritage on the right were hand-me-downs. Other peoples sweat gets me going. But seriously, I LOVE the ones on the left. Whatever brand they are.

I didn't even know belts were a big deal until I read other posts and absolutely swooned over Mango Bay belts. I  NEED. Up until janking the above belt from boy, I had none. I might've worn a fabric belt that came with a pair of jeans you buy at kohl's in like 7th grade, but really I don't own many breeches with beltloops so I don't remember. I do adore this belt though for whenever I might actually wear actual riding pants WITH loops. Its very well made and looks like an equestrian belt, even though its for golfing #frattastic

So yeah, riding pants. Most of mine have been collected through eBay (don't fit very well/uncomfortable) or given to me by friends. They live here the drawer of forgotten pants.

I ACTUALLY ride in leggings from Old Navy/Walmart the majority of the time. And by the majority, I mean literally almost every ride. Sometimes I don't even wear pants. Sometimes I wear sweatpants. It really depends on my mood and the weather.

Blue heeler is helping.
I don't really remember WHEN I got these, but I know they were cheap. THATS how old they are. Also, full of holes for aesthetic value. I just tell myself its really helping my position because there is zero grip. In fact, they are really slippery. It can be fun!

I have 2 pairs of breeches I sometimes utilize when I take pictures, clinic's or really, ride in the presence of other people.

I am very fond of Kerrits schooling tights and breeches. They fit my curvaceous lower body without extra material, are very lightweight, and contain all the "jiggle" without pinching. I also like the pull-ons because no fly. Very adverse to fly's because bunching. You might note the visible holes in the knees of both pairs of pants. I believe they are about 5 years old and were absolutely bought with gift cards.Though, I definitely drool over Fits breeches #WANTNEED

Ok, even if I were rich I would NEVER buy socks from an equestrian place. Can you say over-priced. They live on your feet and absorb sweat. That is their job. If the sock trolls don't steal them first, they will eventually be thrown away. Guess where I get mine? Yeah. Walmart. BUT FUN COLORS.

Both my boots and half chaps are Ariats. My boots are the ONLY thing I paid full price for. I bought them in Missouri in 2009 and I believe I paid close to $250 for them. I obviously didn't take care of them, and they have yet to start disintegrating. Love Ariats. My ONLY pair before these were also Ariats and lasted me 9 years. My half chaps were hand-me-downs from Jackie over at The Wondermare. I ADORE them and have worn the absolute fuck out of them. I have yet to retire them though. My favorite thing is that my boots are brown and my halfchaps are black. Coordinating is not my strong suit.

In winter I build upon summer with nasty old zip sweaters, high school/college hoodies and Plato's Closet vests. I have a Carhartt I wear outside that was a Christmas present. Half the time I wear the boots you see pictured below and sweats. God, I am a mess.

Best outfit to date

Old Navy tights
Oh hey look, Old Navy tights

Those Old Navy tights are everywhere
Classic baggy T and wal-mart leggings
So yeah, that's me and my wardrobe.  I realize my stunning good looks and overall polished appearance would floor even George Morris and for a mere, oh $30 on average  YOU TOO can dress like me!

All aboard the hot-mess express!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Just A Spot Of Colic

The real question here is, which is it "colicing" or "colicking"? I go with the latter when furiously texting all my people that Yankee is surely going to die from colic. Vets? Beuller?

If you're not friends with me on FB or follow me on insta (ottb_eventing) you might be unaware that my angelface had a brief tiff with colic on Monday night.

You know how when you're a parent (be it of a dogchild, horsebeast, or actual human spawn) you just KNOW when something is wrong, like, the second it happens. I had been sitting in my room (not in the barn) on the computer doing stuff for work and I just got this FEELING, like, "I should go check on the horses" even though it wasn't close to dinner time. I didn't. I brushed it off.

Wrong move.

 When I went to feed, Yanks didn't move when I rustled the feed buckets, his ears flopped and he just stood there like "Hai, I'm dying". OK. Yeah..

Me. On the phone with vet.
NO hesitation. I called the vet immediately. He wasn't outright colicking with telltale signs (sweating, kicking, rolling, etc) but I KNEW this wasn't my horse. He was not feeling good at all and I wanted to vet to come out. Luckily he was close, so I just paced around and cleaned, and rolled polos and did the stalls and watched the chickens and ducks wondering WHERE THE ACTUAL FUCK IS MY VET MY HORSE IS DYING FOR SURE, when really it had only been 20 minutes.

In real life I waited less than an hour but it felt like an eternity. The whole time Yankee just stood in his doorway with his head down and ears flopping, not moving an inch. It was unbearable. Of COURSE my mind was racing.

Me. Everyday. With all the things.
Vet was very reassuring, telling me I did the right thing calling him out. Yankee was mildly colicking, vet jargon, rabble rabble, caught it early, would get worse before it got better, need to stay up all night, walk every hour, monitor etc etc. Good??

If any of you have ever had a horse colic on you, its HELL. Hard to describe. It could really go either way. They could be fine, or not, and the waiting is the worst.

This still almost makes me cry,
 I've had 3 of my own horses colic, and one I was watching for a friend and let me tell you, I do not wish that on anyone. My mom made Yankee colic horribly in 2009 by feeding him a scoop of DRY beet pulp while I was out of state. He almost died and she didn't tell me until a month later. THANKS MOM.

I spent all night at the barn. Reading my ipad inbetween coddling Yankee, brushing him, freaking out he wouldn't get better and slowly dying from anxiety and lack of sleep. He finally pooped at 4 am and I have never been more happy to see shit in my life. HORSE PEOPLE ARE FREAKS.

Gradually he improved, but there for a while, I really had no idea.

I now have FULL respect for real human moms because I got zero sleep and was still expected to function the next day. nope. Literally impossible. I felt like I was colicking. I still feel like hell two days later, just from staying up one night, worrying.

YANKEE YOU ARE MY PROBLEM CHILD, but I am glad you are here still.

Hug your horses. Seriously. Right meow.

Monday, August 11, 2014

I Wanna Go Fast

Shout out to Ron Burgundy.

Riding has really picked up lately thanks to the addition of a newly found friend and her closeness to me and equal obsession with eventing and jumping and going fast and stuff.

Jumped the boys last week, scheduled to jump Yankee tomorrow with G, and then XC school Sunday with a workout or two in between.

TOO BAD SHOW SEASON IS BASICALLY WINDING DOWN BUT WHATEVER. I also start working in 3 weeks so BAI to my mostly "tress free", relaxing days. Soon I will be properly dressed like a real human, commuting to my respectable desk job and hopefully cramming in riding, working out and boyfriend time somewhere in there. No sleeps most likely. So trying to make it to a local show even, is really out of the question for the rest of the year I think.


I take solace in the fact that my boys are sound and CAN be ridden, so, positive thoughts there.

G & I had a hankering to gallop, so we took the boys to the sunflower field and let em rip.

It was exhilarating. And wonderful. And frightening. And all the adjectives.

Yankee always surprises me with his mind blowing speed and stride. That horse is like a tiny powerhouse. Bacardi truly impressed me as well. Not only can the horse FLY, but he listens exceptionally well for a horse relatively fresh off the track. He even gave me a cute little flying change.
He's like a fucking freight train. Those massive shoulders are SO powerful and he can really MOVE. Yankee always feels like a little piston, churning up the ground with his quick strides, while Bacardi feels like a runaway train with absolutely huge strides. Both truly powerful gallops in their own way.

Thats both of them pretty fully opened up. I love the stretch Yankee gets. He's always so low to the ground and quick. Then there's the big goon called Bacardi who keeps up with sheer stride length and size. I wish you guys could ride them both and feel what I'm talking about!

Its pretty cool to gallop alongside Yankee, because B will just be meandering (aka galloping "slowly") and as soon as he hears/sees Yankee on his flank, there is no way he's losing. He switches into a gear I've never felt with Yankee and its almost scary because he felt slightly out of control. He's just so BIG!

 I wish I had better video of Yankee, but B completely lost his fucking mind when Yankee blew by him and he basically exploded upwards. I could imagine him just thinking

"oh god, oh GOD, HES COMING CLOSER. Let me...lemme go, lemme lemme LEMME, LET ME RUN WOMAN!!! ARRRGGGHH HES ESCAPING- WHY WONT YOU LET ME.. AHHHHFGFGFGHHH..." *brain explodes* *rears*
Yankee also managed to flip BOTH bell boots off and a shoe. Which makes 6 lost shoes in various ways over the last 3 months. I might point out the farrier had JUST been out 2 days prior to nail back on a HIND shoe he twisted off. I can't even.

So that was fun.

Then on Sunday Funday my wonderful boy SUGGESTED that we go for a ride. He was so keen to try and ride, and confident that he could handle Yankee. I was skeptical because while Yankee is a great horse, he is still an OTTB and pretty hot, especially out in the open. And boy had never ever. I wanted him on Lazy Lilly, but he was persistent. Had to ride the ferrari.

I had underestimated the size of his head so unfortunately the FOUR helmets we own did not fit him. He also forgot his boots at  home. (yes, he owns cowboy boots. He's from TN. Apparently they all have boots there?) Naturally I started off slightly worried, knowing how Yankee could be.  And the greenness of boy. But boy signed his own death warrant, knowingly, so off we went. Mom came with on Lilly lady. 

Precious. Yankee is like WUT are these things on meh
Poor Yankee. He tolerated the extra 100# that was a western saddle and a weightlifter who is thicksolidtight on his back. And poor boy. He was taken aback by the power of a horse and spent the first 20 minutes gripping with his knees for dear life when he couldn't get Yankee to turn or go anywhere and Yankee getting increasingly more and more anxious.

I was pretty sure they were going to both have brain explosions and die. Luckily I had thought ahead and rigged Yankee with a halter and lead, and just ponied them for a bit until boy relaxed and then realized that yes indeed  horses can feel EVERYTHING, including emotions and if you relax, they will too. He then figured out what I had been saying on how to steer and slow him down and for the next 7 miles rode like a greenie pro!

So proud of everyone. Shout out to Bacardi for ponying a slightly insane Yankee, and for boy for staying with it, and for Yankee for tolerating all the new things and eventually rocking out on the trail with my boy. And for mom. Who led the way the whole time on the less insane Lilly Belle.